Throughout the season I have for the most part bitten my tongue when the weekly Rookie Watch continues to find any reason possible to rank Brandon Jennings lower than they should. They have routinely tried to rank backups, Ty Lawson, ahead of Jennings along with other annoying rankings and updates. Today’s update on ESPN Insider pushed me far enough.
The article is labeled “NBA Rookie Watch: Who will be the best” which is obviously subjective at best but still annoying. If you do not get Insider the rankings went like this. 1. Curry 2. Blake Griffin 3. Ricky Rubio 4. Tyreke Evans 5. Jrue Holiday 6. Brandon Jennings.
I have no problem with Curry being number one. ESPN loves him from college which will never change and he does have an entertaining game. I do think there is more of a ceiling to his game than ESPN is willing to admit due to a lack of athletic ability but I can live with Curry at one.
I also have no problem with Griffin at 2. He was the best player coming out and an injury ended any chance at a rookie year.
My problems start with Rubio. Come on, Rubio ahead of Jennings and Evans! Rubio is labeled as Jason Kidd without the athletic ability, that is supposed to be a compliment? Jason Kidd is a great athlete with size, speed, strength and overall athleticism who also has the ability to create and find open guys. If Rubio is admittedly not nearly as athletic how can they possibly project a great career? We have not seen Rubio ever play in the NBA with NBA rules, lets see Rubio go up against the premier athletes in the world, than make projections which put him above two of the better rookies of the last few years, Evans and Jennings.
My next problem is Jrue Holiday ahead of Jennings. Come on. Jennings is better in every statistical area and IS LEADING HIS TEAM TO THE PLAYOFFS WITH LIKE TALENT! Seriously, who has more talent outside of the PGs, Milwaukee or Philly. Philly has Igoudala and Brand, the Bucks have Bogut and now Salmons. The major difference between the teams has been Jennings, and Scott Skiles.
Which leads into my next point, this is the first year Skiles has had with Jennings, since the Bucks look to be stabilizing the franchise we could have several years of Skiles and Jennings together which should only benefit the Young Buck.
1, 2, 3, 4 in any order Curry, Evans, Griffin and Jennings. Nobody else should intrude on these four due to what three of them have done this season and what Griffin likely will due. Rubio and Holiday should never be ranked ahead of any of these four until they actually prove something, anything, even in a subjective ranking. After the top four I think Beaubois from the Mavs has an argument along with Holiday and Dejuan Blair, then put up the mythical creature Ricky Rubio if you feel the need.
Colin Cowherd said best a few months ago when he labeled Rubio the Lock Ness Monster. We hear about him, but never see him. Does he actually exist?